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The wonders of Coconut oil

By Ayodeji Osho
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Coconut oil has been gaining ground as a super food or a

miracle food.
Probably because it offers diverse health benefits and for

the fact that it
is one of the richest sources of saturated fat, even more so

than butter.
The oil has many antioxidants, antimicrobial, antibacterial

and antifungal
properties. It also helps in the absorption of other minerals.

Coconut oil is one the few foods that foster health and

beauty from inside
out.
Here are 7 amazing benefits of coconut oil..
1. Boosts Immune System
Coconut oil is made up of healthy fats that make it excellent

for immunity.
These are antibacterial and antimicrobial commonly known

as lauric acid,
caprylic acid and capric acid. These are well known for

fighting and
preventing many virus and bacteria-causing diseases like

herpes, influenza,
candida, athletes foot, even cold and flu.
Coconut oil also helps in absorption of certain minerals

which strengthens
the immune system generally.
2. Controls Blood Sugar
Coconut oil is one oil that diabetics can eat without fear and

even enjoy
other benefits from. How? Unlike most saturated fats,

coconut oil is a
medium-chain fatty acid(MCFA) which is more easily
metabolized. MCFAs take
only 4 processes to get digested and absorbed compared

long-chain fatty
acid that takes about 26 steps. These MCFAs are not

usually stored in the
body as they are easily absorbed by cells to use as energy

immediately.
coconut oil also help control blood sugar by improving the

secretion of
insulin and more so promotes the effective utilization of

blood glucose.
Coconut oil plays a key role in preventing as well as

treating diabetes.
3. Reduce Risk of Heart Disease
As surprising as it may seem, coconut oil has been used

traditionally for
many years as a powerful weapon against heart disease.

Scientists and
researchers have recently proved that eating coconut oil

can reduce your
chances of suffering a heart attack.
The saturated fats in coconut oil not only increase the

healthy cholesterol
(known as HDL) in your body but also help convert LDL

'bad' cholesterol
into good cholesterol. By increasing the HDLs in the body, it

promotes
heart health and lowers risk of heart disease.
4 weight loss
Eating coconut oil (fat) to burn fat may sound pretty absurd

but the fatty
acids in coconut oil has powerful effects on metabolism.

These fatty acid
(MCFA) have proven to increase how much fat you burn

especially belly fat.
Eating coconut oil increases the amount of calories burnt by

5% over 24
hours leading to weight loss over a long term. Fatty acids

in coconut oil
significantly reduces appetite and has a positive effect on

body weight.
Taking 2 tablespoons of coconut oil before workout would

increase
effectiveness of your workout.
However, consuming too much will give you extra calories

and could
indirectly contribute to the very problem you may be trying

to address.
5. Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease.
Coconut oil is a natural remedy for certain brain disorders

like
Alzheimer's and even epilepsy. The digestion of MCFAs by

the liver creates
ketones which are readily accessible to the brain without

the need of
insulin to process glucose into energy. As the brain of

Alzheimer's
patients has lost its ability to create its own insulin, the

ketones from
the coconut oil could create an alternative source to power

brain cells and
repair brain function.
Coconut oil also improves memory and brain function

especially in older
people.
6. Improves digestion and reduces ulcer.
Fatty acids in coconut oil eradicates harmful bacteria and

promotes growth
of the good bacteria in the digestive tract. Coconut oil also

plays a key
role in healing and soothing inflammed tissues along the

digestive tract
and could be used as a light laxative if suffering from

constipation. By
continuing to consume coconut oil, the digestive tract will

resume
stability and well-being
7. Hair and skin care
Coconut oil is an excellent moisturizer for keeping the skin

smooth and
hydrated all day. Plus it has this creamy feel and smell, it is

a great
alternative for baby lotion. Due to its antibacterial and

antifungal
properties, it is very good for treating acne and baby rash. It

is best to
use at night after bath if you have to worry about oily skin.

Coconut oil also adds moisture and shine to dry and

damaged hair. When used
as hot oil treatment, it will condition your strands as well as

stimulate
the hair follicles and promote faster hair growth.
Idowu Oyindamola is a medical student and writer at yourhealthdone.blogspot.com